Seventy years ago a story graced the front page of a 1950 Times-Republican issue urging Wayne County residents to take polio precautions. With the current COVID-19 pandemic, the precautions are eerily similar to those from the Wayne County Polio Chapter.
When the story was published in 1950, there were 12 cases of Polio in Wayne County as reported by Pauline Faulkner. During this time the state department of health classified Wayne County as an epidemic area due to the number of cases.
As of July 31, Wayne County currently sits with a total of 14 positive cases. Of those 14, 11 have recovered with two active and one death.
Faulkner stated in the 1950 article people of the county would need to adopt their own measures to combat the epidemic and strongly advised against taking children to public gatherings.
It was noted in the article children were recommended to stay within their own friend circles and to be kept away from people they had not been around. It was advised not to stay too long in cold water or to sit in wet clothes and to always wash hands before eating.
Citizens were cautioned to watch for fevers, sore throats, headaches, upset stomachs and sore muscles and were reminded having those symptoms would not necessarily mean a person had polio.
Much like the past, in current day the Wayne County Public Health has advised citizens to practice social distancing, wear facial mask coverings, frequent hand washing, covering coughs or sneezes with tissues or into elbow/upper arms and to stay home if sick. Anyone that has been in contact with a positive COVID case is asked to do their part and self-isolate to help contain the spread of the virus.
Anyone experiencing coughs, fevers of 100.4 or greater accompanied with shortness of breath are advised to contact their health care provider before making an appointment at the clinic.